Sidon

Sidon

Overview
Sidon or Saïda is the third-largest city in Lebanon
Lebanon
Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

. It is located in the South Governorate of Lebanon, on the Mediterranean
Mediterranean Sea
The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean surrounded by the Mediterranean region and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Anatolia and Europe, on the south by North Africa, and on the east by the Levant...

 coast, about 40 km (25 mi) north of Tyre and 40 km (25 mi) south of the capital Beirut
Beirut
Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, with a population ranging from 1 million to more than 2 million . Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's Mediterranean coastline, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan...

. In Genesis, Sidon is the son of Canaan the grandson of Noah
Noah
Noah was, according to the Hebrew Bible, the tenth and last of the antediluvian Patriarchs. The biblical story of Noah is contained in chapters 6–9 of the book of Genesis, where he saves his family and representatives of all animals from the flood by constructing an ark...

. Its name coincides with the modern Arabic word for fishery.

Sidon is a city of 200,000 inhabitants who are overwhelmingly Muslims.


Sidon has been inhabited since very early in prehistory.
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Encyclopedia
Sidon or Saïda is the third-largest city in Lebanon
Lebanon
Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

. It is located in the South Governorate of Lebanon, on the Mediterranean
Mediterranean Sea
The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean surrounded by the Mediterranean region and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Anatolia and Europe, on the south by North Africa, and on the east by the Levant...

 coast, about 40 km (25 mi) north of Tyre and 40 km (25 mi) south of the capital Beirut
Beirut
Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, with a population ranging from 1 million to more than 2 million . Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's Mediterranean coastline, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan...

. In Genesis, Sidon is the son of Canaan the grandson of Noah
Noah
Noah was, according to the Hebrew Bible, the tenth and last of the antediluvian Patriarchs. The biblical story of Noah is contained in chapters 6–9 of the book of Genesis, where he saves his family and representatives of all animals from the flood by constructing an ark...

. Its name coincides with the modern Arabic word for fishery.

Sidon is a city of 200,000 inhabitants who are overwhelmingly Muslims.

History



Sidon has been inhabited since very early in prehistory. The archaeological site of Sidon II shows a lithic
Lithic
Lithic may refer to:*a stone tool*Lithic analysis*Lithic stage*Lithic core *Lithic reduction *Lithic technology *Lithic flake *Lithic fragment...

 assemblage
Assemblage
An assemblage is an archaeological term meaning a group of different artifacts found in association with one another, that is, in the same context...

 dating to the Acheulean
Acheulean
Acheulean is the name given to an archaeological industry of stone tool manufacture associated with early humans during the Lower Palaeolithic era across Africa and much of West Asia, South Asia and Europe. Acheulean tools are typically found with Homo erectus remains...

, whilst finds at Sidon III include a Heavy Neolithic
Heavy Neolithic
Heavy Neolithic is a style of large stone and flint tools associated primarily with the Qaraoun culture in the Beqaa Valley, Lebanon, dating to the Epipaleolithic or early Pre-pottery Neolithic at the end of the Stone Age...

 assemblage suggested to date just prior to the invention of pottery
Pottery
Pottery is the material from which the potteryware is made, of which major types include earthenware, stoneware and porcelain. The place where such wares are made is also called a pottery . Pottery also refers to the art or craft of the potter or the manufacture of pottery...

. It was one of the most important Phoenicia
Phoenicia
Phoenicia , was an ancient civilization in Canaan which covered most of the western, coastal part of the Fertile Crescent. Several major Phoenician cities were built on the coastline of the Mediterranean. It was an enterprising maritime trading culture that spread across the Mediterranean from 1550...

n cities, and may have been the oldest. From here, and other ports, a great Mediterranean commercial empire was founded. Homer
Homer
In the Western classical tradition Homer , is the author of the Iliad and the Odyssey, and is revered as the greatest ancient Greek epic poet. These epics lie at the beginning of the Western canon of literature, and have had an enormous influence on the history of literature.When he lived is...

 praised the skill of its craftsmen in producing glass, purple dyes, and its women's skill at the art of embroidery. It was also from here that a colonizing party went to found the city of Tyre. Tyre also grew into a great city, and in subsequent years there was competition between the two, each claiming to be the metropolis ('Mother City') of Phoenicia. Glass manufacturing, Sidon's most important enterprise in the Phoenician era, was conducted on a vast scale, and the production of purple dye was almost as important. The small shell of the Murex trunculus was broken in order to extract the pigment that was so rare it became the mark of royalty.

In AD 1855, the sarcophagus of King Eshmun’azar
Eshmunazar
Eshmunazar was the name of several Phoenician kings of Sidon.The sarcophagus of Eshmunazar II, which is now in the Louvre, was unearthed in 1855 in a site near Sidon, and contains an inscription - known as KAI-14 , in Phoenician Canaanite, inscribed using the Phoenician alphabet. Now located in...

 II was discovered. From a Phoenician inscription on its lid, it appears that he was a "king of the Sidonians," probably in the 5th century BCE, and that his mother was a priestess of ‘Ashtart, "the goddess of the Sidonians."

In this inscription the gods Eshmun
Eshmun
Eshmun was a Phoenician god of healing and the tutelary god of Sidon.This god was known at least from the Iron Age period at Sidon and was worshipped also in Tyre, Beirut, Cyprus, Sardinia, and in Carthage where the site of Eshmun's temple is now occupied by the chapel of Saint Louis.According to...

 and Ba‘al
Baal
Baʿal is a Northwest Semitic title and honorific meaning "master" or "lord" that is used for various gods who were patrons of cities in the Levant and Asia Minor, cognate to Akkadian Bēlu...

 Sidon 'Lord of Sidon' (who may or may not be the same) are mentioned as chief gods of the Sidonians. ‘Ashtart is entitled ‘Ashtart-Shem-Ba‘al '‘Ashtart the name of the Lord', a title also found in an Ugaritic text.

In the years before Jesus, Sidon had many conquerors: Assyria
Assyria
Assyria was a Semitic Akkadian kingdom, extant as a nation state from the mid–23rd century BC to 608 BC centred on the Upper Tigris river, in northern Mesopotamia , that came to rule regional empires a number of times through history. It was named for its original capital, the ancient city of Assur...

ns, Babylon
Babylon
Babylon was an Akkadian city-state of ancient Mesopotamia, the remains of which are found in present-day Al Hillah, Babil Province, Iraq, about 85 kilometers south of Baghdad...

ians, Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

ians, Greeks
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

, and finally Romans
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

. Herod the Great
Herod the Great
Herod , also known as Herod the Great , was a Roman client king of Judea. His epithet of "the Great" is widely disputed as he is described as "a madman who murdered his own family and a great many rabbis." He is also known for his colossal building projects in Jerusalem and elsewhere, including his...

 visited Sidon. Both Jesus and Saint Paul
Paul of Tarsus
Paul the Apostle , also known as Saul of Tarsus, is described in the Christian New Testament as one of the most influential early Christian missionaries, with the writings ascribed to him by the church forming a considerable portion of the New Testament...

 are said to have visited it too (see Biblical Sidon below). The city was eventually conquered by the Arabs and then by the Ottoman Turks.

Like other Phoenician city-states, Sidon suffered from a succession of conquerors. At the end of the Persian era in 351 BCE, it was invaded by the emperor Artaxerxes III and then by Alexander the Great in 333 BCE when the Hellenistic era of Sidon began. Under the successors of Alexander, it enjoyed relative autonomy and organized games and competitions in which the greatest athletes of the region participated. In the Necropolis of Sidon, important finds such as the Alexander Sarcophagus, the Lycian tomb and the Sarcophagus of the Crying Women were discovered, which are now on display at the Istanbul Archaeology Museum
Istanbul Archaeology Museum
The Istanbul Archaeology Museums is a group of three archeological museums located in the Eminönü district of Istanbul, Turkey, near Gülhane Park and Topkapı Palace.The Istanbul Archaeology Museums consists of three museums....

 in Istanbul
Istanbul
Istanbul , historically known as Byzantium and Constantinople , is the largest city of Turkey. Istanbul metropolitan province had 13.26 million people living in it as of December, 2010, which is 18% of Turkey's population and the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Europe after London and...

.

When Sidon fell under Roman domination, it continued to mint its own silver coins. The Romans also built a theater and other major monuments in the city. In the reign of Elagabalus a Roman colonia was established there, and it was given the name of Colonia Aurelia Pia Sidon. During the Byzantine
Byzantine
Byzantine usually refers to the Roman Empire during the Middle Ages.Byzantine may also refer to:* A citizen of the Byzantine Empire, or native Greek during the Middle Ages...

 period, when the great earthquake of AD 551
551 Beirut earthquake
The 551 Beirut earthquake occurred on 9 July of 551 AD. It had an estimated magnitude of about 7.6 on the moment magnitude scale and a maximum felt intensity of X on the Mercalli intensity scale. It triggered a devastating tsunami which affected the coastal towns of Phoenicia, causing great...

 destroyed most of the cities of Phoenicia, Beirut
Beirut
Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, with a population ranging from 1 million to more than 2 million . Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's Mediterranean coastline, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan...

's School of Law took refuge in Sidon. The town continued quietly for the next century, until it was conquered by the Arab
Arab
Arab people, also known as Arabs , are a panethnicity primarily living in the Arab world, which is located in Western Asia and North Africa. They are identified as such on one or more of genealogical, linguistic, or cultural grounds, with tribal affiliations, and intra-tribal relationships playing...

s in AD 636.


On 4 December 1110 Sidon was sacked
Siege of Sidon (1110)
The Siege of Sidon was an event in the aftermath of the First Crusade. The coastal city of Sidon was captured by the forces of Baldwin I of Jerusalem and Sigurd I of Norway, with assistance from the Ordelafo Faliero, Doge of Venice.- Background :...

 in the First Crusade
First Crusade
The First Crusade was a military expedition by Western Christianity to regain the Holy Lands taken in the Muslim conquest of the Levant, ultimately resulting in the recapture of Jerusalem...

 by King Baldwin of Jerusalem and King Sigurd of Norway. It then became the centre of the Lordship of Sidon
Lordship of Sidon
The Lordship of Sidon was one of the four major fiefdoms of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, one of the Crusader States. However, in reality, it appears to have been much smaller than the others and had the same level of significance as several neighbors, such as Toron and Beirut, which were...

, an important seigneury in the Kingdom of Jerusalem
Kingdom of Jerusalem
The Kingdom of Jerusalem was a Catholic kingdom established in the Levant in 1099 after the First Crusade. The kingdom lasted nearly two hundred years, from 1099 until 1291 when the last remaining possession, Acre, was destroyed by the Mamluks, but its history is divided into two distinct periods....

. During the Crusades it was sacked several times: it was finally destroyed by the Saracens in 1249. In 1260 it was again destroyed by the Mongols
Mongols
Mongols ) are a Central-East Asian ethnic group that lives mainly in the countries of Mongolia, China, and Russia. In China, ethnic Mongols can be found mainly in the central north region of China such as Inner Mongolia...

. The remains of the original walls are still visible.

After Sidon came under Ottoman Turkish
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 rule in the seventeenth century, it regained a great deal of its earlier commercial importance. After World War I it became part of the French Mandate
League of Nations mandate
A League of Nations mandate was a legal status for certain territories transferred from the control of one country to another following World War I, or the legal instruments that contained the internationally agreed-upon terms for administering the territory on behalf of the League...

 of Lebanon
French Mandate of Lebanon
The state of Greater Lebanon, the predecessor of modern Lebanon, was created in 1920 as part of the French scheme of dividing the French Mandate of Syria into six states....

. During World War II the city, together with the rest of Lebanon, was captured by British forces fighting against the Vichy
Vichy
Vichy is a commune in the department of Allier in Auvergne in central France. It belongs to the historic province of Bourbonnais.It is known as a spa and resort town and was the de facto capital of Vichy France during the World War II Nazi German occupation from 1940 to 1944.The town's inhabitants...

 French, and following the war it became a major city of independent Lebanon
Lebanon
Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

.

Following the Palestinian exodus
1948 Palestinian exodus
The 1948 Palestinian exodus , also known as the Nakba , occurred when approximately 711,000 to 725,000 Palestinian Arabs left, fled or were expelled from their homes, during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and the Civil War that preceded it. The exact number of refugees is a matter of dispute...

 in 1948, a considerable number of Palestinian
Palestinian people
The Palestinian people, also referred to as Palestinians or Palestinian Arabs , are an Arabic-speaking people with origins in Palestine. Despite various wars and exoduses, roughly one third of the world's Palestinian population continues to reside in the area encompassing the West Bank, the Gaza...

 refugees arrived in Sidon, as in other Lebanese cities, and were settled at the large refugee camps of Ein el-Hilweh and Mieh Mieh
Mieh Mieh (camp)
Mieh Mieh Camp is Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon, located on the outskirts of Mieh Mieh in the hills east of Sidon. In 2003 it had a population 5,037 refugees. It was established in 1954...

. At first these consisted of enormous rows of tents, but gradually houses were constructed. The refugee camps constituted de-facto neighborhoods of Sidon, but had a separate legal and political status which made them into a kind of enclaves. At the same time, the remaining Jews of the city fled, and the Jewish cemetery fell into disrepair, threatened by coastal erosion.

Sidon today


Sidon was a small fishing town of 10,000 inhabitants in 1900, but studies in 2000 showed a population of 65,000 in the city and around 200,000 in the metropolitan area. The little level land around the city is used for cultivation of some wheat, vegetables, and fruits, especially citrus and bananas. The fishing in the city remains active with a newly opened fishery that sells fresh fish by bidding every morning. The ancient basin is transformed into a fishing port, while a small quay was constructed to receive small commercial vessels.
Saida International Stadium
Saida International Stadium
Saida International Stadium is a 22,600 capacity multi-purpose stadium in Saida , Lebanon. The stadium was built on the expanded grounds of the old Saida Municipal Stadium, as one of the venues to host matches during the 2000 AFC Asian Cup that was held in Lebanon. It is currently mostly used for...

 was inaugurated in 2000 for the Asian Football Confederation's Cup 2000.

The Makab


Near the southern entrance to the city lies a 'rubbish mountain' called the Makab, a 600,000 cubic meter heap that reaches the height of a four-storey building. It was originally created to dispose of the remains of buildings destroyed in Israeli air strikes during the 1982 invasion, but it is now the main dump for the city. Growing out of the sea, it has become an environmental hazard, with medical waste and plastic bags polluting nearby fishing grounds.

The Ministry of Environment has recently, however, come up a $50,000+ plan to clean the whole area and transform the dump into a green space, along with other heaps in the country. Qamla beach in Sidon, a coast in close proximity to the Sea Castle, witnessed a large municipal clean up in May 2011, as it was an easy target of rubbish being washed up by the Makab. These plans will revive the former glory of the city's coasts and attract tourists who avoided swimming in Sidon's sea before.

Old City



The historical core of Sidon is a Mamluk
Mamluk
A Mamluk was a soldier of slave origin, who were predominantly Cumans/Kipchaks The "mamluk phenomenon", as David Ayalon dubbed the creation of the specific warrior...

-era old city that extends between the Sea Castle and the St. Louis Castle. Located on a promontory jutting into the sea, this walled medieval city is very well-preserved and is still inhabited today. The old City resembles a vaulted maze with narrow alleyways and winding streets. Arched pathways connect the different neighborhoods of the city. On street level, numerous souvenir shops and mini-markets can be found with old- fashioned bakeries making crunchy whole wheat bread
Whole wheat bread
Whole wheat bread is a type of bread that is made using flour which is partly or entirely made from whole or almost whole wheat grains, see whole wheat flour and whole grain. It is one kind of brown bread. Synonyms or near-synonyms for whole wheat bread elsewhere in the world are whole grain bread...

, called "Kaak". A lot of the alleys take the name of their residents' occupations like the "Carpenters' Alley" and the "Tailors' Alley". Several mosques dating back to the Umayyad
Umayyad
The Umayyad Caliphate was the second of the four major Arab caliphates established after the death of Muhammad. It was ruled by the Umayyad dynasty, whose name derives from Umayya ibn Abd Shams, the great-grandfather of the first Umayyad caliph. Although the Umayyad family originally came from the...

 Era are still preserved and are open to the public. A number of TV series and Music Videos have been filmed inside the Old city of Sidon. Being of great historical and architectural significance, the Old City went through a lot of renovations and there is still of restoring to be done.

Administrative divisions


The city of Sidon is administrated by the Municipality of Sidon. The municipality is constituted of a council of 21 members including the City Mayor and his Deputy. It has administrative and financial independence but remains under the control and supervision of the central government, specifically the Ministry of Interior. The municipality's jurisdiction is limited to a region of 786 hectares in area and 5 meters in elevation, while each of the city's suburbs is administrated by its own independent municipal council. Sidon is the center of the Governorate of South Lebanon, and hosts the seat of the Governor of Southern Lebanon. The city is also the center of the Sidon District and the Union of Sidon and Zahrani Municipalities (founded in 1978 and contains 15 municipalities). Sidon hosts the southern regional headquarters of a series of governmental facilities like the Central Bank of Lebanon, Électricité du Liban, Central Telecommunications Station and others. It is also the home of the Justice Palace of South Lebanon in its new headquarters on East Boulevard (the old headquarters were an old Ottoman
Ottoman Empire
The Ottoman EmpireIt was usually referred to as the "Ottoman Empire", the "Turkish Empire", the "Ottoman Caliphate" or more commonly "Turkey" by its contemporaries...

 serial that is currently occupied by the LSF and is planned to be transformed into a cultural center by the municipality).

In the 2000 and 2005 parliamentary elections, the Sidon District along with the Tyre
Tyre District
-Phoenician era:Tyre was a major port in Phoenician times. It grew wealthy from its far-reaching colonies and industries of purple-dyed textiles. This attracted the attention of conquerors among them the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar and Alexander the Great....

 and Bint Jbeil
Bint Jbeil
Bint Jbeil is the second largest town in the Nabatiye Governorate in Southern Lebanon.The town has an estimated population of 30,000. Its exact population is unknown, because Lebanon has not conducted a population census since 1932.-History:...

 districts formed the first electoral district of South Lebanon. However, in the 2009 elections – and due to the reactivation of the 1960 electoral law – the city of Sidon was separated from its district to form a separate electoral district.

Religion and demographics



Sidon is a conservative city with a vast Sunni Muslim majority. Sunnis make up approximately (80%) of the local population; Shiites and Christians combined make up (20%). Sidon is the seat of the Greek Melkite Catholic Archbishop of Sidon and Deir el Qamar
Deir el Qamar
Deir el Qamar is a village in south-central Lebanon, five kilometres outside of Beiteddine, consisting of stone houses with red-tiled roofs. During the 16th to 18th centuries, Deir el Qamar was the residence of the governors of Lebanon...

, and has housed a significant Catholic population throughout its history. Sidon also hosts the seats of the Sunni and the Shiite Muftis of South Lebanon.
Religion Voters Percent (%) Religion Voters Percent (%)
Sunni 36163 79,7 Roman Latin Catholic 82 0.2
Shiite 4888 10.8 Armenian Catholic 38 0.1
Druze 43 0.1 Chaldean 19 0.0
Alawite 2 0.0 Syriac Orthodox 18 0.0
Greek Melkite Catholic 1686 3.7 Syriac Catholic 17 0.0
Maronite 1513 3.3 Assyrian 4 0.0
Greek Orthodox 310 0.7 Copt 1 0.0
Armenian Orthodox 256 0.6 Other Christians 19 0.0
Evangelicals 171 0.4 Unspecified 161 0.4

Main sights



  • Sidon Sea Castle
    Sidon Sea Castle
    Sidon Sea Castle is a castle in Sidon, Lebanon. It was built by the Crusaders in 1228 on a small island connected to the mainland by a causeway. A climb to the top leads to the roof where there is a good view of the port and the old part of the city.Today the castle consists primarily of two...

    , a fortress built by the Crusaders
    Crusaders
    The Crusaders are a New Zealand professional rugby union team based in Christchurch that competes in the Super Rugby competition. They are the most successful team in Super Rugby history with seven titles...

     in the early 13th century. It is located near the Port of Sidon.
  • Sidon Soap Museum
    Sidon Soap Museum
    The Sidon Soap Museum is a museum in Sidon, Lebanon. It traces the history of soap making in the region, its development and manufacturing techniques. Visitors can see a demonstration of how traditional olive oil soaps are made and learn about the history of the "hammam" traditions...

    . It traces the history of the soap making in the region and its different manufacturing steps.
  • Khan el Franj (“Caravanserai
    Caravanserai
    A caravanserai, or khan, also known as caravansary, caravansera, or caravansara in English was a roadside inn where travelers could rest and recover from the day's journey...

     of the French”), built by Emir Fakhreddine in the 17th century to accommodate French merchants and goods in order to develop trade with Europe. This is a typical khan with a large rectangular courtyard and a central fountain surrounded by covered galleries.
  • Debbane Palace, a historical residence built in 1721, an example of Arab-Ottoman architecture. It is currently in the process of being transformed into the History Museum of Sidon.
  • Old Souk, a historical vaulted market stretching between the Sea Castle and the Castle of St. Louis.
  • The Castle of St. Louis (Qalaat Al Muizz). It was built by the Crusaders
    Crusaders
    The Crusaders are a New Zealand professional rugby union team based in Christchurch that competes in the Super Rugby competition. They are the most successful team in Super Rugby history with seven titles...

     in the 13th century on top of the remains of a fortress built by the Fatimid
    Fatimid
    The Fatimid Islamic Caliphate or al-Fāṭimiyyūn was a Berber Shia Muslim caliphate first centered in Tunisia and later in Egypt that ruled over varying areas of the Maghreb, Sudan, Sicily, the Levant, and Hijaz from 5 January 909 to 1171.The caliphate was ruled by the Fatimids, who established the...

     caliph Al Muizz. It is located to the south of old souks near Murex hill.
  • Eshmun Temple
    Eshmun Temple
    The Temple of Eshmun is an ancient place of worship dedicated to Eshmun, the Phoenician god of healing. It is located near the Awali river, northeast of Sidon in southwestern Lebanon. The site was occupied from the 7th century BC to the 8th century AD, suggesting an integrated relationship with...

    , dedicated to the Phoenicia
    Phoenicia
    Phoenicia , was an ancient civilization in Canaan which covered most of the western, coastal part of the Fertile Crescent. Several major Phoenician cities were built on the coastline of the Mediterranean. It was an enterprising maritime trading culture that spread across the Mediterranean from 1550...

    n God of healing. Built in the 7th century BCE, it is located in the north of Sidon near the Awali river.

  • The Ziri, a tiny rocky island located 1.5 km off the coastline of Sidon. In ancient times, it was used as a breakwater for the protection of ships and fleets. The island is a preferred destination for the locals who come here for picnics and swimming. The island is accessed by several ferry boats from the port of Sidon.
  • Our Lady of Mantara
    Our Lady of Mantara
    Our Lady of Mantara, also known in English as Our Lady of Awaiting, is a holy Christian site and a Marian shrine in the village of Maghdouché in Lebanon...

    , or Our Lady of Awaiting, a Christian shrine dedicated to the veneration of the Virgin Mary. It is located on a 400 m high green hill overlooking Sidon. The shrine is built on a small cave where it is the believed that the Virgin Mary stayed and prayed while Jesus went preaching in Sidon. The shrine is composed of a Marian tower – with a Bronze statue of Mary on top – and a Large Catholic Basilica, the 3rd largest church in the Middle East.
  • The Corniche is a seaside promenade that extends for about 7&nsbp;km along the city's coast. The Corniche is a popular destination for walkers, joggers, skaters and bikers. Push cart vendors offer an array of local snacks and drinks.
  • The Largest Lebanese Flag. On Lebanon's 66th Independence Day, Sidon witnessed the erection of the largest Lebanese flag. The flag is 12 meters long and 6 meters wide, and was erected on a 21 meter high pole. The flag was raised on the intersection of Rafik Hariri
    Rafik Hariri
    Rafic Baha El Deen Al-Hariri , was a business tycoon and the Prime Minister of Lebanon from 1992 to 1998 and again from 2000 until his resignation, 20 October 2004.He headed five cabinets during his tenure...

     Boulevard and Riyad Solh Street, and is easily accessible from the Corniche. The flag was painted by 66 students from the city.
  • The Bahaa El-Dine Mosque. Financed by Rafik Hariri
    Rafik Hariri
    Rafic Baha El Deen Al-Hariri , was a business tycoon and the Prime Minister of Lebanon from 1992 to 1998 and again from 2000 until his resignation, 20 October 2004.He headed five cabinets during his tenure...

     and named after his father, the mosque is a 21st-century take on Istanbul
    Istanbul
    Istanbul , historically known as Byzantium and Constantinople , is the largest city of Turkey. Istanbul metropolitan province had 13.26 million people living in it as of December, 2010, which is 18% of Turkey's population and the 3rd largest metropolitan area in Europe after London and...

    's Ottoman Mosques. Located on a roundabout on the city's northern entrance, the mosque is an architectural gem that dots the city's skyline. The mosque with its authentic Arabesque
    Arabesque
    The arabesque is a form of artistic decoration consisting of "surface decorations based on rhythmic linear patterns of scrolling and interlacing foliage, tendrils" or plain lines, often combined with other elements...

     designs, interior Islamic inscriptions, inner courtyards, Mecca
    Mecca
    Mecca is a city in the Hijaz and the capital of Makkah province in Saudi Arabia. The city is located inland from Jeddah in a narrow valley at a height of above sea level...

    -styled minarets and awe-inspiring 36-meter-high dome is a non-miss landmark in the city.

Shopping and entertainment


Sidon contains several shopping venues boasting local and international brands, as well as a handful of food and beverage outlets like the "Spinneys" and "BSAT" supermarkets.
Traditional Coffeeshops serving Turkish coffee and the fruit-flavored Hubble Bubble
Hubble Bubble
Hubble Bubble is generally an uncontrolled mixture and this dish is similar to Bubble and Squeak in that it is an English dish containing leftover food items such as potatoes, cabbage, brussel sprouts, carrots and onion but with the addition of baked beans in tomato sauce.While the ingredients of...

 occupy the seafront of the Old City while modern restaurants, especially those that serve Lebanese and Italian cuisine, are centered in the new city. From McDonald's
McDonald's
McDonald's Corporation is the world's largest chain of hamburger fast food restaurants, serving around 64 million customers daily in 119 countries. Headquartered in the United States, the company began in 1940 as a barbecue restaurant operated by the eponymous Richard and Maurice McDonald; in 1948...

 and KFC
KFC
KFC, founded and also known as Kentucky Fried Chicken, is a chain of fast food restaurants based in Louisville, Kentucky, in the United States. KFC has been a brand and operating segment, termed a concept of Yum! Brands since 1997 when that company was spun off from PepsiCo as Tricon Global...

 to Starbucks
Starbucks
Starbucks Corporation is an international coffee and coffeehouse chain based in Seattle, Washington. Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world, with 17,009 stores in 55 countries, including over 11,000 in the United States, over 1,000 in Canada, over 700 in the United Kingdom, and...

, Burger King
Burger King
Burger King, often abbreviated as BK, is a global chain of hamburger fast food restaurants headquartered in unincorporated Miami-Dade County, Florida, United States. The company began in 1953 as Insta-Burger King, a Jacksonville, Florida-based restaurant chain...

 and Pizza Hut
Pizza Hut
Pizza Hut is an American restaurant chain and international franchise that offers different styles of pizza along with side dishes including pasta, buffalo wings, breadsticks, and garlic bread....

, several western chains have opened at least one branch in the city, with more opening in the near future. Traditional Oriental sweets are Sidon's speciality with regionally renowned sweetshops found all over the city.

Shopping is concentrated within two areas: East Boulevard, and the city center. From the high-end designer stores of Pierre Cardin
Pierre Cardin
Pierre Cardin Cardin was known for his avant-garde style and his Space Age designs. He prefers geometric shapes and motifs, often ignoring the female form. He advanced into unisex fashions, sometimes experimental, and not always practical...

 and Christian Dior
Christian Dior
Christian Dior , was a French fashion designer, best known as the founder of one of the world's top fashion houses, also called Christian Dior.-Life:...

 to stores directed to low and middle-income consumers, clothing stores in Sidon cater to all tastes and needs. Several other international clothing brands could be found in the city. These include ALDO, Jack & Jones, Vero Moda, Springfield, Timberland
The Timberland Company
The Timberland Company is an American manufacturer and retailer of outdoors wear with a focus on footwear. Its three key locations are in Stratham, New Hampshire; Danville, Kentucky; and Ontario, California....

, Zara
Zara (clothing)
Zara is a Spanish clothing and accessories retailer based in Arteixo, Galicia, and founded in 1975 by Amancio Ortega and Rosalía Mera. It is the flagship chain store of the Inditex group; the fashion group also owns brands such as Massimo Dutti, Pull and Bear, Oysho, Uterqüe, Stradivarius and...

, Mango
Mango (clothing)
Mango, stylized MANGO, is a clothing design and manufacturing company. Isak Andic is the president.Its goal is "to be present in every city" in the world...

, Pull and Bear
Pull and Bear
Pull and Bear is a Spanish clothing and accessories retailer based in Narón, Galicia and founded in 1991. In September 2011, the company will sell through an online store. -Concept & Style:...

, Mothercare
Mothercare
Mothercare plc is a British retailer which specialises in products for expectant mothers and in general merchandise for children up to 8 years old. It is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index.-History:...

, Bossini
Bossini
Bossini International Holdings Limited , or Bossini , is a worldwide garment distributor and retailer headquartered in Hong Kong. It offers a range of casual wear apparel products, including ladies', men's, and kids' wear under its Bossini brand name...

, H&M
H&M
H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB is a Swedish retail-clothing company, known for its fast-fashion clothing offerings for women, men, teenagers and children....

, Benetton
Benetton Group
Benetton Group S.p.A. is a global luxury fashion brand, based in Treviso, Italy. The name comes from the Benetton family who founded the company in 1965. Benetton Group is listed in Milan....

, and GS
GS Group
GS Group is a Korean conglomerate. GS comprises GS Holdings and subsidiaries & affiliates including GS Caltex, GS Retail, GS Shop, GS EPS, GS Global, GS Sports and GS E&C among others. The asset size is at 31.1 trillion KRW as the end of 2007 placing GS at the 6th largest in Korea excluding the...

. Some of these stores could be found in the 2 malls in the city, Saida Mall (24,000 sq meters) and Le Mall (12,000 sq meters), aside to kids entertainment facilities, cafes and restaurants.

Sidon also has a large Amusement Park near its southern entrance.

Health


According to 2006 numbers, Sidon contains approximately 1000 beds distributed among 9 hospitals. There is only one public hospital in the city while the rest are all private. The city also contains over a 100 medical clinics. Some of the medical institutions in the city are the among the most prominent in Lebanon. The first Heart-Transpant Operation ever to be performed in Lebanon was in the Hammoud Hospital in Sidon in 1999.
Hospital Type Email
Labib Hospital Private N/A
Saida Governmental Hospital Public N/A
Al Janoub hospital Private N/A
Alaeddine hospital Private alaeddine_hpaterra.net
South Health Complex Private complexehospitalierdusud@chs-hospital.com
Dallaa hospital Private dallaahospital@hotmail.com
Al Nakib hospital Private N/A
Al Rai Hospital Private N/A
Hammoud hospital Private dhamoud@cyberia.net.lb
Jebeili hospital Private N/A

Education


Sidon is home to numerous educational facilities ranging from public elementary schools to private universities. According to a 2006 study, the city is home to 29 schools that serve a total of 18,731 students: 37% are in public schools, 63% are in private schools. Sidon also contains 10 universities, 5 of which are private universities.
University Faculty Type
Lebanese University
Lebanese University
The Lebanese University is the only public institution for higher learning in Lebanon. Founded in 1951, it has 17 faculties as of 2006 and serves various cultural, religious, and social groups of students and teachers....

 (LU)
Faculty of Law, Political Science and Public Administration Public
University of Saint Joseph
University of Saint Joseph
University of Saint Joseph was founded in 1996, previously known as Macau Inter-University Institute . It was jointly organized by the Catholic University of Portugal and the Diocese of Macau...

 (USJ)
N/A Private
American University of Lebanon (AUL) N/A Private
Al-Jinan University N/A Private
Lebanese University (LU) Faculty of Public Health Public
Lebanese University (LU) Faculty of Literature and human Science Public
Lebanese University (LU) Institute of Social Sciences Public
American University of Science and Technology
American University of Science and Technology
Founded by Hiam Sakr of Ain Ebel, Lebanon, the American University of Science and Technology, in Beirut, Lebanon, an educational institute, was established on the 21st of March 1994 under the name of AUC , as an external degree program with the State University of New York/Empire State College, New...

N/A Private
Lebanese American University N/A Private
Lebanese University (LU) Institute of Technology Public


The Beirut Arab University declared recently that its future Sidon Campus will host its Faculty of Medicine.

Festivals and celebrations

  • The "Nights of the Khan" festival, consisting of a series of concerts and performances held in the Khan El-Franj in the Old City of Sidon. The festival takes place during the holy month of Ramadan
    Ramadan
    Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, which lasts 29 or 30 days. It is the Islamic month of fasting, in which participating Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking and sex during daylight hours and is intended to teach Muslims about patience, spirituality, humility and...

    . It is organized by the International Sidon Festivals Committee and the Hariri Foundation. The Festival hosts a wide array of artists and performers; it features Sufi art, poetry recitals, religious song medleys, Folkloric Lebanese and Palestinian
    Palestinian people
    The Palestinian people, also referred to as Palestinians or Palestinian Arabs , are an Arabic-speaking people with origins in Palestine. Despite various wars and exoduses, roughly one third of the world's Palestinian population continues to reside in the area encompassing the West Bank, the Gaza...

     dance groups. The festival was frequently attended by the Prime Minister of Lebanon, Tourism Minister, Education Minister, Culture Minister aside to numerous social, political and religious Lebanese figures.
  • The "Wedding of the City" is a street carnival held in Sidon in the El-Fitr Muslim Holiday. The carnival runs for three consecutive days and is organized by the International Sidon Festivals Committee and the Hariri Foundation. The Carnival takes place on a 300-meter-long section of the Coastal Highway -extending between the Sidon Sea Castle
    Sidon Sea Castle
    Sidon Sea Castle is a castle in Sidon, Lebanon. It was built by the Crusaders in 1228 on a small island connected to the mainland by a causeway. A climb to the top leads to the roof where there is a good view of the port and the old part of the city.Today the castle consists primarily of two...

     and the Port- that gets closed and transformed into a Pedestrian-only zone. Last summer, the carnival attracted more than 30,000 spectators on its 3rd day. The carnival features European and Local Acrobats, giant floating balloons, exotic dancers, a light and sound show...etc.
  • Independence Day Celebrations. Sidon played a significant role in Lebanon's quest for Independence in the early 1940s whether through its nationalist politicians or through its citizens' protests and demonstrations demanding Independence. Hence, On 22 November of every year, Sidon celebrates Lebanon's Independence through a series of festivities that involve: a Military Parade in the Barracks of the Lebanese Army, an honorary reception in the city's serial held by the Governor, and a tribute to Sidong's independence figure Adel Osseiran. 2009's Independence day celebrations featured an extra festivity which is the erection of the largest Lebanese flag, on the city's northern entrance.

Oil and petroleum


Sidon serves as the Mediterranean terminus of the Trans-Arabian Pipeline, a 1720 km (1,068.76 mi) long oil pipeline that pumps oil from the fields near Abqaiq
Abqaiq
Abqaiq, or in Arabic Bqaiq , is a Saudi Aramco camp in the interior of the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia, located in the desert 60 km southwest of the Dhahran-Dammam-Khobar metropolitan area. The camp was built in the 1940s by ARAMCO...

 in Saudi Arabia. The pipeline played an important role in the global trade of petroleum—helping with the economic development of Lebanon
Lebanon
Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

—as well as American and Middle Eastern political relations. At the time it was built in 1947, the project was considered ground-breaking and innovative with a maximum capacity of about 500000 oilbbl/d. After the 1967 Six-Day War
Six-Day War
The Six-Day War , also known as the June War, 1967 Arab-Israeli War, or Third Arab-Israeli War, was fought between June 5 and 10, 1967, by Israel and the neighboring states of Egypt , Jordan, and Syria...

 and due to constant bickering between Saudi Arabia and Syria and Lebanon over transit fees, the emergence of oil supertankers, and pipeline breakdowns, the section of the line beyond Jordan ceased operation in 1976.

The city is the site of a large-scale oil facility constituting oil-storage tanks, an oil refinery, a thermal power plant and a fuel port. During the Lebanese civil war
Lebanese Civil War
The Lebanese Civil War was a multifaceted civil war in Lebanon. The war lasted from 1975 to 1990 and resulted in an estimated 150,000 to 230,000 civilian fatalities. Another one million people were wounded, and today approximately 350,000 people remain displaced. There was also a mass exodus of...

 and the Israeli invasions, the site was bombarded several times either by Israeli war-planes or by Palestinian militia groups which lead eventually to the closure of the site. The oil tank and the refinery are in severe conditions but are now undergoing a massive rehabilitation plan put down by the Ministry of Power and Water Resources, as well as those in Tipoli in the north, to store Lebanon's future oil and natural gas supplies recently discovered offshore. For now, the facilities that still work on the site are the thermal power plant and the fuel port, which the state began to use to import oil after the pipeline ceased work in the 70's.

Politics


The Sectarian division in Sidon is evident. Although the locals have found some sort of understanding to settle together and coexist, the division managed to rise to the surface on several occasions. The city proper is largely occupied by Sunni Muslims, while Christians dwell in the densely populated suburbs, forming an urban belt that encircles the city. Shiite Muslims live in a large hilly terrian that extends south of the city.

This sectarian and demographic division rose to the surface during the Lebanese Civil War
Lebanese Civil War
The Lebanese Civil War was a multifaceted civil war in Lebanon. The war lasted from 1975 to 1990 and resulted in an estimated 150,000 to 230,000 civilian fatalities. Another one million people were wounded, and today approximately 350,000 people remain displaced. There was also a mass exodus of...

 when armed clashes erupted between the pro-Palestinian Sunni Muslims and the anti-Palestinian Christians. The clashes ended with the surrender of the Christian front, and the Christians were forced to move to east Beirut
Beirut
Beirut is the capital and largest city of Lebanon, with a population ranging from 1 million to more than 2 million . Located on a peninsula at the midpoint of Lebanon's Mediterranean coastline, it serves as the country's largest and main seaport, and also forms the Beirut Metropolitan...

. After the war ended in 1990, the Christians have gradually returned to their hometowns.

After the Hariri assassination
Assassination of Rafic Hariri
On 14 February 2005, Rafic Hariri, former Prime Minister of Lebanon, was killed, along with 77 others, when explosives equivalent of around 1,000 kg of TNT were detonated as his motorcade drove near the St. George Hotel in Beirut. Among the dead were several of Hariri's bodyguards and his friend...

 in 2005, Lebanon was divided between two large coalitions: 14 March Coalition (anti-Syrian) & 8 March Coalition (pro-Syrian). Sidon, being the hometown of Rafik Hariri
Rafik Hariri
Rafic Baha El Deen Al-Hariri , was a business tycoon and the Prime Minister of Lebanon from 1992 to 1998 and again from 2000 until his resignation, 20 October 2004.He headed five cabinets during his tenure...

, supported the anti-Syrian bloc while the rest of the largely Shiite Zahrani region lined with Hezbollah. This sharp division led to severe clashes on 7 May 2008 in Beirut between the Sunnis and the Shiites, with minor altercations extending to Sidon.

In Sidon, the symbols of support for the Sunni contingent in politics manifests itself in large photos of Rafic and Sa'ad Hariri on buildings everywhere, as well as banners with slogans such as 'We will not allow scum to run our country'. In Sidon, Saudi Arabia is the dominant outside influence and it is said that Saudi money keeps the Lebanese economy afloat.

In the 2009 parliamentary elections, Sidong city was declared a separate electoral district in accordance with the 1960 electoral law. 2 Sunni Muslim seats were designated for the representation of the city in the Parliament. The battle was between 2 lists: the first included former Prime Minister Fouad Sanioura and Minister Bahia Hariri
Bahia Hariri
Bahia Hariri is a Lebanese politician and sister of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.- Early life and education :She was born in Sidon, located in the Southern governorate in Lebanon....

, the second list contained only one candidate Osama Saad, son of a prominent political family and Hariri's rival. After a tough battle between the 2 lists, the Pro-Hariri duo swept the city with 24,000 votes.

Archaeology


Sidon I is an archaeological site located to the east of the city, south of the road to Jezzine
Jezzine
Jezzine is a town in Lebanon, located from Sidon and south of Beirut. Surrounded by mountain peaks, pine forests, and at an average altitude of 950 m , it is the main summer resort and tourist destination of South Lebanon...

. An assemblage of flint
Flint
Flint is a hard, sedimentary cryptocrystalline form of the mineral quartz, categorized as a variety of chert. It occurs chiefly as nodules and masses in sedimentary rocks, such as chalks and limestones. Inside the nodule, flint is usually dark grey, black, green, white, or brown in colour, and...

 tools was found by P. E. Gigues suggested to date between 3800 to 3200 BCE. The collection included narrow axe
Axe
The axe, or ax, is an implement that has been used for millennia to shape, split and cut wood; to harvest timber; as a weapon; and as a ceremonial or heraldic symbol...

s or chisel
Chisel
A chisel is a tool with a characteristically shaped cutting edge of blade on its end, for carving or cutting a hard material such as wood, stone, or metal. The handle and blade of some types of chisel are made of metal or wood with a sharp edge in it.In use, the chisel is forced into the material...

s that were polished on one side and flaked on the other, similar to ones found at Ain Cheikh, Nahr Zahrani and Gelal en Namous. The collection appears to have gone missing from the Archaeological Museum of the American University of Beirut
Archaeological Museum of the American University of Beirut
The Archaeology Museum of the American University of Beirut in Beirut, Lebanon is the third oldest museum in the Near East after Cairo and Constantinople.-History:...

.

Sidon II is said to be "near the church" at approximately fifty meters above sea level
Above mean sea level
The term above mean sea level refers to the elevation or altitude of any object, relative to the average sea level datum. AMSL is used extensively in radio by engineers to determine the coverage area a station will be able to reach...

. P. E. Gigues suggested that the industry found on the surface of this site dated to the Acheulean
Acheulean
Acheulean is the name given to an archaeological industry of stone tool manufacture associated with early humans during the Lower Palaeolithic era across Africa and much of West Asia, South Asia and Europe. Acheulean tools are typically found with Homo erectus remains...

.

Sidon III was found by E. Passemard in the 1920s, who made a collection of material that is now in the National Museum of Beirut
National Museum of Beirut
The National Museum of Beirut is the principal museum of archaeology in Lebanon. The collection was begun after World War I, and the museum was officially opened in 1942. The museum has collections totalling about 100,000 objects, most of which are antiquities and medieval finds from excavations...

 marked "Camp de l'Aviation". It includes large flint
Flint
Flint is a hard, sedimentary cryptocrystalline form of the mineral quartz, categorized as a variety of chert. It occurs chiefly as nodules and masses in sedimentary rocks, such as chalks and limestones. Inside the nodule, flint is usually dark grey, black, green, white, or brown in colour, and...

 and chert
Chert
Chert is a fine-grained silica-rich microcrystalline, cryptocrystalline or microfibrous sedimentary rock that may contain small fossils. It varies greatly in color , but most often manifests as gray, brown, grayish brown and light green to rusty red; its color is an expression of trace elements...

 bifacials that may be of Heavy Neolithic
Heavy Neolithic
Heavy Neolithic is a style of large stone and flint tools associated primarily with the Qaraoun culture in the Beqaa Valley, Lebanon, dating to the Epipaleolithic or early Pre-pottery Neolithic at the end of the Stone Age...

 origin.

Sidon IV is the tell
Tell
A tell or tel, is a type of archaeological mound created by human occupation and abandonment of a geographical site over many centuries. A classic tell looks like a low, truncated cone with a flat top and sloping sides.-Archaeology:A tell is a hill created by different civilizations living and...

 mound of ancient Sidon with Early Bronze Age
Bronze Age
The Bronze Age is a period characterized by the use of copper and its alloy bronze as the chief hard materials in the manufacture of some implements and weapons. Chronologically, it stands between the Stone Age and Iron Age...

 (3200 BCE -) deposits, now located underneath the ruined Château de St. Louis and what are also thought to be the ruins of a Roman
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....

 theatre.

The Biblical Sidon



The Bible describes Sidon in several passages:
  • It received its name from the "first-born" of Canaan, the grandson of Noah
    Noah
    Noah was, according to the Hebrew Bible, the tenth and last of the antediluvian Patriarchs. The biblical story of Noah is contained in chapters 6–9 of the book of Genesis, where he saves his family and representatives of all animals from the flood by constructing an ark...

     (Genesis 10:15, 19).
  • The Tribe of Zebulun
    Tribe of Zebulun
    According to the Hebrew Bible, the Tribe of Zebulun was one of the Tribes of Israel....

     has a frontier on Sidon. (Gen. 49:13)
  • It was the first home of the Phoenicia
    Phoenicia
    Phoenicia , was an ancient civilization in Canaan which covered most of the western, coastal part of the Fertile Crescent. Several major Phoenician cities were built on the coastline of the Mediterranean. It was an enterprising maritime trading culture that spread across the Mediterranean from 1550...

    ns on the coast of Canaan, and from its extensive commercial relations became a "great" city. (Joshua 11:8; 19:28).
  • It was the mother city of Tyre. It lay within the lot of the tribe of Asher, but was never subdued (Judges 1:31).
  • The Sidonians long oppressed Israel (Judges 10:12).
  • From the time of David
    David
    David was the second king of the united Kingdom of Israel according to the Hebrew Bible and, according to the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, an ancestor of Jesus Christ through both Saint Joseph and Mary...

     its glory began to wane, and Tyre, its "virgin daughter" (Isaiah 23:12), rose to its place of pre-eminence.
  • Solomon
    Solomon
    Solomon , according to the Book of Kings and the Book of Chronicles, a King of Israel and according to the Talmud one of the 48 prophets, is identified as the son of David, also called Jedidiah in 2 Samuel 12:25, and is described as the third king of the United Monarchy, and the final king before...

     entered into a matrimonial alliance with the Sidonians, and thus their form of idolatrous worship found a place in the land of Israel
    Land of Israel
    The Land of Israel is the Biblical name for the territory roughly corresponding to the area encompassed by the Southern Levant, also known as Canaan and Palestine, Promised Land and Holy Land. The belief that the area is a God-given homeland of the Jewish people is based on the narrative of the...

     (1 Kings 11:1, 33).
  • Jezebel
    Jezebel (Bible)
    Jezebel was a princess, identified in the Hebrew Book of Kings as the daughter of Ethbaal, King of Tyre and the wife of Ahab, king of north Israel. According to genealogies given in Josephus and other classical sources, she was the great-aunt of Dido, Queen of Carthage.The Hebrew text portrays...

     was a Sidonian princess (1 Kings 16:31).
  • It was famous for its manufactures and arts, as well as for its commerce (1 Kings 5:6; 1 Chronicles 22:4; Ezekiel 27:8).
  • It is frequently referred to by the prophets (Isaiah 23:2, 4, 12; Jeremiah 25:22; 27:3; 47:4; Ezekiel 27:8; 28:21, 22; 32:30; Joel 3:4).
  • Elijah sojourned in Sidon, performing miracles (1 Kings 17:9–24; ).
  • Jesus visited the "coasts" of Tyre and Sidon and from this region many came forth to hear him preaching (Mark 3:8; Luke 6:17), leading to the stark contrast in to Korazin and Bethsaida.
  • From Sidon, at which the ship put in after leaving Caesarea, Paul
    Paul of Tarsus
    Paul the Apostle , also known as Saul of Tarsus, is described in the Christian New Testament as one of the most influential early Christian missionaries, with the writings ascribed to him by the church forming a considerable portion of the New Testament...

     finally sailed for Rome (Acts 27:3, 4).

Sanchuniathon

  • The account ascribed to the Phoenician historian Sanchuniathon
    Sanchuniathon
    Sanchuniathon is the purported Phoenician author of three lost works originally in the Phoenician language, surviving only in partial paraphrase and summary of a Greek translation by Philo of Byblos, according to the Christian bishop Eusebius of Caesarea...

     makes Sidon a daughter of Pontus, son of Nereus
    Nereus
    In Greek mythology, Nereus was the eldest son of Pontus and Gaia , a Titan who with Doris fathered the Nereids, with whom Nereus lived in the Aegean Sea. In the Iliad the Old Man of the Sea is the father of Nereids, though Nereus is not directly named...

    . She is said there to have first invented musical song from the sweetness of her voice.

Twin towns – Sister cities


Sidon is twinned with: Constanţa
Constanta
Constanța is the oldest extant city in Romania, founded around 600 BC. The city is located in the Dobruja region of Romania, on the Black Sea coast. It is the capital of Constanța County and the largest city in the region....

, Romania Sofia
Sofia
Sofia is the capital and largest city of Bulgaria and the 12th largest city in the European Union with a population of 1.27 million people. It is located in western Bulgaria, at the foot of Mount Vitosha and approximately at the centre of the Balkan Peninsula.Prehistoric settlements were excavated...

, Bulgaria Sochi
Sochi
Sochi is a city in Krasnodar Krai, Russia, situated just north of Russia's border with the de facto independent republic of Abkhazia, on the Black Sea coast. Greater Sochi sprawls for along the shores of the Black Sea near the Caucasus Mountains...

, Russia

Notable people

  • Dorotheus
    Dorotheus of Sidon
    Dorotheus of Sidon was a 1st-century Hellenistic astrologer who wrote a didactic poem on horoscopic astrology known in Greek as the Pentateuch...

     (1st century BCE) Greek astrologer.
  • Zeno of Sidon
    Zeno of Sidon
    Zeno of Sidon was an Epicurean philosopher from the Phoenician city of Sidon. His writings do not survive, but there are some epitomes of his lectures preserved among the writings of his pupil Philodemus.-Life:...

    , an Epicurean philosopher of the 1st century BCE, who was born in the city of Sidon in Phoenicia.
  • Fouad Sanioura, former Prime Minister of Lebanon
    Lebanon
    Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

    .
  • Adel Osseiran
    Adel Osseiran
    Adel Osseiran was a prominent Lebanese politician and statesman, a former Speaker of the Lebanese Parliament, and one of the founding fathers of the Lebanese Republic....

    , co-founder of modern Lebanon
    Lebanon
    Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

    .
  • Ali Osseiran, Member of Parliament and former Minister
  • Rafic Hariri, former Prime Minister and late leader of the Future Movement.
  • Sheikh Mohamad Osseiran
    Sheikh Mohamad Osseiran
    Sheikh Mohamad Osseiran is the Jaafari mufti of Saida and Zahrani districts of South Lebanon, Lebanon. Sheikh Osseiran is famous as a highly moderate Shi'a-Muslim Lebanese politician who focuses much of his efforts on interfaith dialogue...

    , Jaafari Mufti of Sidon.
  • Riad Solh, former Prime Minister of Lebanon
    Lebanon
    Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

     who also participated in Lebanon's independence from the French.
  • Takkie El Dine Solh, former Prime Minister, died in Paris.
  • Sami Solh, former Prime Minister of Lebanon
    Lebanon
    Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

    .
  • Rashid Solh, former Prime Minister of Lebanon
    Lebanon
    Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

    .
  • Nazih Bizri, former Minister of Health, member of Parliament
  • Afif Bizri, former Chief of Staff of the Syrian armed forces
  • Fuad Bizri, former Minister of Public Works
  • Amin Bizri, head of the Lebanese Union of Engineers, and President of the Arab Federation of Engineers.
  • Raymond Audi
    Raymond Audi
    Raymond Wadih Audi is a Lebanese banker, politician and businessman. He is the chairman of the board and general manager of Bank Audi SAL – Audi Saradar Group, Lebanon....

    , former Minister of Refugees, Siniora former government of Lebanon
    Lebanon
    Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

    .
  • Bahia Hariri
    Bahia Hariri
    Bahia Hariri is a Lebanese politician and sister of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.- Early life and education :She was born in Sidon, located in the Southern governorate in Lebanon....

    , former Minister of Education in the Siniora government of Lebanon
    Lebanon
    Lebanon , officially the Republic of LebanonRepublic of Lebanon is the most common term used by Lebanese government agencies. The term Lebanese Republic, a literal translation of the official Arabic and French names that is not used in today's world. Arabic is the most common language spoken among...

    . Bahia Hariri is the only sister of the late Prime Minister Rafic Hariri. Presently, Bahia Hariri is a member of the Lebanese Parliament as she was re-elected in June 2009.
  • Saad Hariri
    Saad Hariri
    Saad-eddine Rafiq Al-Hariri is a Saudi-Lebanese billionaire who served as the Prime Minister of Lebanon from 2009 until 2011. He is the second son of Rafiq Hariri, the former Lebanese Prime Minister who was assassinated in 2005...

    , former Prime Minister of Lebanon.
  • Maarouf Saad, former deputy representing Sidon in the national parliament and founder of the Popular Nasserite Party. Assassinated in 1975.
  • Moustapha Saad, son of Maarouf Saad and former deputy representing Sidon in the national parliament.
  • Ousama Saad, son of Maarouf Saad and current deputy representing Sidon in the national parliament.
  • Sulayman Al-Zein, former Minister of Education.
  • Hiba Al-Qawwas, Lebanon's leading soprano.
  • Fayza Ahmad (Al-Rawwass), One of the greatest singers of the Arab world.

External links